I'm on vacation from the day job this week and I just finished up some edits on a story that will see the light of day sooner rather than later, so I'm celebrating a bit tonight. Dr. Whiskey IS a close friend, after all.
As I write this, Inception is on HBO and this is one of the best movies I've seen in a long, long time. This blog isn't turning into a film review site, but what I like about Christopher Nolan's wonderful film is that it MOVES. There's exposition, sure, and there's a lot of talking, but it goes forward with every scene. The story I've been working on has had trouble with moving forward and this final draft (in actuality the third) solves a lot of the problems I've had with my writing in general.
I like to have people talk. It's real. It happens. People do this.
But in fiction it sucks. There needs to be ACTION that moves the story. I've fooled myself into thinking that words are actions because in real life they can be. In fiction they're not. In fiction words are not actions, they're just words.
This story (and I can't wait to announce it as I've been working on it off and on over the last eight months) needs ACTION. This draft brings the Action like nothing I've written before. I've had to step way beyond my comfort zone to write this thing, and I like that. It's been a particular challenge that I've had a lot of trouble with, but now that it 's almost done I feel like I'm a better writer now. I understand more than I did before.
Of course, you'll have to be the judge of that once it's released into the wild. My opinion is that it Moves way better than it did in the first and second drafts. We'll see what the editors think in the end, but I'm happy with where it's at for now.
Everything a writer does is an exercise. We learn from each story, from each scene. Inception is a brilliant bit of writing and a masterful bit of direction. In the end it's a story and I can learn from that. I have but there's still more to learn.
This story is not my Inception. That's yet to come. This story is just one of many to come. It's not the story of my life, but my life is in the story. I can't wait to share it with you.